NMDC: From iron ore, into gold

NMDC is celebrating its 'golden moment' as it inaugurates a gold mine in Western Australia and will shortly start operations there

Indian government-owned National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC) announced the commencement of gold mining operations at Mt Celia in Western Australia through its subsidiary company Legacy Iron Ore Limited on November 4th 2023.

Shri Nagendra Nath Sinha, Secretary at the Ministry of Steel, Government of India, inaugurated Legacy's Gold Project in the presence of Shri Amitava Mukherjee, Chairman and Managing Director of NMDC and Shri Rakesh Gupta, Legacy's CEO. The company's Mount Celia Gold Project will start ore mining at Blue Peter pits in the next two to three months.

It is a watershed achievement for the 66 year old mining company as it adds a new geography and a new mineral to its Portfolio, reiterating its commitment to build self-reliance in India’s mining sector.

Continuing to innovate in sustainable mining

NMDC is the single largest producer of iron ore in India. It owns and operates highly mechanised iron ore mines and has its registered office at Hyderabad, Telangana. NMDC is considered to be one of the low-cost producers of iron ore in the world. It also operates the only mechanised diamond mine in India at Panna, Madhya Pradesh.

The company produces about over 40mtpa of iron ore from its major iron producing units i.e. from Bailadila Sector in Chhattisgarh and Donimalai in the Bellary-Hospet region of Karnataka. NMDC envisages to have an iron ore production capacity of 100 MNT by 2030.

All of NMDC mining complexes have been rated 5 Star by Indian Bureau of Mines, Ministry of Mines which is a testimony to its scientific and sustainable mining practices. It has its own R&D Centre at Hyderabad which is recognised as a Centre of Excellence by UNIDO. All the NMDC mines and R&D Centre have ISO & EMS accreditations.

NMDC has a legacy of meeting as well as surpassing the commitments and expectations of its stakeholders. Throughout its existence of over 65 years, NMDC has endeavoured to positively uplift the lives of communities around its areas of operations. The conviction that social responsibility is an integral part of the wealth creation process and can enhance business competency, maximises the value of wealth creation to society and thereby contribution to nation building is ingrained in the core philosophy of the organisation.

Legacy is focused on the exploration and development of mineral projects in Western Australia, with specific focus on iron ore, gold, base metals, nickel, lithium and rare earths. With the support of NMDC Limited, the company is actively setting its sights on the critical mineral sector. Its primary interest is in lithium. Currently Legacy is actively seeking opportunities to secure or partner in premier lithium projects in Western Australia through joint ventures or offtake arrangements.

In addition, Legacy has recently executed joint venture agreements with Hancock, in respect of the development of the Mt Bevan Magnetite project, and Lithium and Base Metals exploration.

The Mt Celia project lies within the Laverton Tectonic Zone, some 40km south of the Sunrise Dam gold mine, holding approximately 8Moz. The project currently contains several known gold occurrences including Kangaroo Bore and Blue Peter prospects, and hosts a JORC 2012 resource of 6.97mt @ 1.39g/t for 312,600 ounces.

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